2023 has seen a distressing rise in auto accident fatalities in Texas, potentially marking the state’s worst year on record, as per a recent analysis.
Patino Law, a personal injury firm based in San Antonio and McAllen, scrutinised crash data from January to September 2023. This data, sourced from the Texas Department of Transportation’s (TxDOT) Crash Records Information System (C.R.I.S.), indicates a worrying upward trend.
The research found an increase in total crashes, from 464,555 in 2022 to 468,850 in 2023, during the same period. The spike in fatalities is particularly alarming, rising by 20% from 2,646 to 3,180.
TxDOT’s Texas Motor Vehicle Traffic Crash Facts report shows an increasing trend in auto accident deaths over the years. While one fatality occurred every two hours and 34 minutes in 2012, this rate had shortened to one death every one hour and 57 minutes by 2022.
For 2023, the frequency of fatalities has intensified, with a death every one hour and 50 minutes. Historical patterns indicate a probable increase in fatalities as the year progresses.
Coinciding with the second anniversary of TxDOT’s #EndTheStreakTX campaign, this data is particularly poignant. The campaign, started in 2021, aims to end the continuous streak of daily deaths on Texas roads since November 7th, 2000.
A mock funeral organised by TxDOT’s Pharr District on November 2nd, 2023, highlighted the risks of distracted and impaired driving, with speeding being the most significant cause of crashes in 2023.
Dr. Louis Patino, head of Patino Law Firm, stated, “This data presents a sobering reality and highlights the urgent need for change if we are to address the increase in accident fatalities and finally break the streak of no deathless days on our roads.
Initiatives can only achieve so much and government officials are not the only parties responsible. We all have our part to play as motorists, passengers, and pedestrians and must remember that our actions can have devastating consequences. It is far too easy to look at numbers and become detached, but we must never forget that every fatality represents a loss that leaves a permanent mark on the lives of families all across our state.”
Patino Law Firm’s exhaustive research also covers the types of vehicles most often involved in accidents, the deadliest roads and counties, and the common charges against drivers. Their complete Up-to-Date Guide to Auto Accidents in Texas guide is available on their website.